elite netball athlete izzy

Athlete Spotlight – Brand Ambassador Izzy

Elite Netball Academy athlete Izzy has been training with us for two years. Izzy plays GA/WA for Leeds Athletic Netball Club and is part of the Leeds Rhinos U16 Programme. We caught up with Izzy to find out why she loves netball, what being an Elite Brand Ambassador means and what she hopes to achieve in the game.

Name: Izzy

Age: 12

Club: Leeds Athletic Netball Club and Leeds Rhinos Pathway

Time playing netball: Two years

Favourite international players: Nat Metcalf and Helen Housby

Aspirations in netball: To play in the Superleague and for the England Roses

Pre-match food of choice: Pasta and a protein bar

Training with Elite Netball Academy: Two years

What keeps you motivated: Being the best I can be

Elite netball academy athlete Izzy with Nat Metcalf
Izzy on the right with ENA Ambassador Nat Metcalf

What drew you to Elite Netball Academy?

I knew other girls who spoke very highly of the coaching at Elite. I had only just started playing netball at the time and wanted to improve my game so decided to join the academy to develop my skills.

What are your favourite sessions at Elite?

I enjoy the technical sessions with Anna Carter and Alice Smith as they really improve my game. I also look forward to the sessions with Nat Metcalf and Nat Panagarry as they pass on their international netball experiences.

Elite netball academy athlete Izzy with coach Alice Smith
Izzy with coach Alice Smith

How do you think Elite netball academy has helped you develop as an athlete?

Without a doubt, Elite has helped me get to where I am today in netball. When I started out two years ago I hadn’t really played netball so they have taught me a lot about the technical, tactical, physical and mental sides of the game.

Why did you want to be an Elite Brand Ambassador?

I feel Elite Netball Academy has been one of the main reasons my netball has improved so much over the last two years. I only started playing netball at the start of 2021 and Elite’s coaching and advice has helped me achieve what I have so far. For this reason, I feel helping to promote ENA wherever possible as a Brand Ambassador would be a chance for me to thank the coaches for their coaching and support of me in my development. Hopefully, other girls wanting to improve their netball will see my story and join Elite.

What are you most looking forward to doing in your role as an Elite Brand Ambassador? 

I am looking forward to sharing my positive experiences of Elite with other netballers who will then hopefully join and benefit from the coaching. I am also looking forward to supporting Elite on Social Media and at my School/Club.

What did it feel like getting into the Leeds Rhinos Pathway?

I was delighted to be selected for Leeds Rhinos U16s as I am only a U13. Physically it has been challenging with the girls being older, taller, and stronger, but it has helped me develop my game to cope with the physicality. The training sessions have been really beneficial and it has been good to work with Chloe Smith and Erin Hodgkiss at Rhinos who also coach me at Elite Netball Academy. It would be good to keep working hard and progress through the Rhinos pathway.”

elite netball academy Izzy plays for Leeds Rhinos U16
Izzy is part of the Leeds Rhinos Pathway

Tell us about the friends you have made through training with elite

I have made so many friends from all over the north of England in the two years I’ve been with Elite. Girls at other clubs as well who I often play against at my club! We might be rivals on the court but at Elite Netball Academy sessions we can work together and challenge each other. It makes the sessions even more fun, knowing I am training with some of my best friends!

What would you say to anyone considering joining Elite netball academy?

Do it! It will really improve your netball skills and you will have a great time working with some of the best coaches in the country. It doesn’t matter which club you play for, the academy helps you improve your game while you play for your regular club or school team.

You’ve joined us at a number of camps over the years, how have they supplemented the weekly classes

The weekly classes run during school term time and it is great to train on another night in addition to my Club training. During the school holidays, the classes stop but there are netball camps instead. I love the camps and especially staying away at Residential Netball Camp, learning about netball all day but then having some great fun with my friends at night.

Meet Elite netball athlete Lily

Meet Yorkshire U18 High-Performance Centre athlete Lily.

What’s your favourite thing about training with Elite netball academy?

I learn something new at every session. I look forward to seeing my friends every week but also know the session will, in some way, improve my netball.

What’s it like getting advice from Nat Metcalf and Nat Panagarry – What have you learnt from them?

It is good to be coached by international players I usually see on the TV or at Superleague games. I have learnt great tactical and technical skills from them – skills they have learnt on their way to the top. The best thing for me is that they are so approachable and passionate about helping us improve our netball.

Elite netball academy athlete Izzy
Izzy plays for Leeds Athletic Netball Club

To enquire about how Elite Netball Academy could progress your netball training, please fill out the contact form below a member of the Elite team will be in touch:

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Find out how Taylor trained with Elite Netball Academy to get into the Leeds Rhinos Netball hub. read Taylor’s story here or meet Manchester Brand Ambassador Jess.

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